ISTANBUL – TDN with wire dispatches
Eight suspects in the explosion that injured 16 people in the western city of İzmir last Thursday were captured and taken into custody on the weekend.
The suspects, captured in İzmir and the southeastern city Diyarbakır, are believed to be members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, reported the Anatolia news agency. Four suspects captured in Diyarbakır -- Z.B, G.D, R.S, and E.D. -- were brought to İzmir. Four other suspects -- T.S, A.S, C.S., and M.A -- were captured in İzmir's Kadifekale district, reported CNN-Türk news channel yesterday.
The suspects were taken into custody on accusations of helping and sheltering the bombers. Materials believed to be used in preparing a bomb were found in C.S.' house in İzmir.
Police forces believe that Z.B is the bomber who parked the bomb-laden car, before exploding it by remote control using a mobile phone just as a military vehicle and a police bus were approaching it. The police in Diyarbakır also found the remaining materials used to produce a bomb in a house in Diyarbakır.
The suspects were found thanks to the Automatic Crossing System, or OGS, used on Istanbul's bridges. The police found out that the car used in the blast was stolen and the identity of drivers through recordings of OGS points in Istanbul.
A radical Kurdish group claimed responsibility for the İzmir attack Saturday, as well as a suicide bombing in the southern city of Mersin on Tuesday that wounded 12 police officers, reported Agence France-Presse yesterday.
The Kurdistan Freedom Falcons, or TAK, a shadowy group that has claimed deadly bomb attacks in the past, said the attacks were "acts of revenge" against what it called Ankara's mistreatment of Turkey's Kurdish population and warned of further attacks.
Explosives destroyed by police forces.
Meanwhile, explosives were found in a packet in the Karacaahmet Cemetery in the Üsküdar district of Istanbul on Saturday, reported Anatolia news agency. Experts blew up the packet under control and said it contained a time-adjusted bomb. The investigation still continues, and the road beside the cemetery is closed to traffic temporarily.
Two fragmentation grenades and one sound bomb were found near the highway in the western province of Bolu on Saturday. The explosives were destroyed by a team from Ankara.
PKK attack with bazookas
A group of PKK members attacked a police station with bazookas in the southeastern province of Siirt on Saturday night. No one was injured or died in the attack, said officials.
Older brother released in Dink case
Meanwhile, the older brother of one of the main suspects in the murder of journalist Hrant Dink, who was detained by police Thursday, was released Saturday. Osman Hayal, the older brother of Yasin Hayal -- a suspect in Hrant Dink' murder case, was released after being in custody for only three days. Hayal was reportedly in Istanbul and trailing Dink the day of murder.